The other day my grandkids were in their bedroom playing. They are four years apart in age so it wasn't long before a fight developed. The youngest used her normal weapon to try and win my long distance support-she screeched loudly for her sister to "stop it!"
Now I don't know what "it" was and I tried to do what I normally do in this kind of battle, ignore both sides. But the youngest one had a new card up her sleeve.
Her mom had given her an old cell phone to use as a MP3 player for music. Although it could play music, the phone was inoperable. But the camera also still works and she figured out how to make it shoot video.
So out she marched with the end of the fight recorded for posterity and evidence of her sister's wrong doing. This very blurry rendition of the fight included the screech at the end.
None of the beginning of the confrontation was included. Somehow the part where she kicked over her sister's Polly Pocket house because it was too close to hers was missing.
As a very experience child dispute lawyer, IE "mom", with over 30 years in the profession, I quickly realized this was incomplete evidence and would not be recognized in a court room. I ruled quickly and dismissed all charges against either party.
Not satisfied the youngest took to walking up and down the front side walk replaying the video over and over. I was sentenced to listening to the screech over and over again. I stepped in and confiscated the offending device and deleted the video.
Okay, actually I didn't know how to delete it and had to make her do it. She is five.
What a statement about the state of our lives and the way we get our information now-a-days. We certainly have more sources to use to access information. But we need to be more careful than ever about what we use to make our judgments.
Our information overload and the limited time we have to take it all in makes it easier for us to see the world through other people's interpretations and editing of the facts. There is so much taken out of context.
The more we rely on others to present facts to us, the more polarized as a nation we are getting. We need the big picture.
A sentence pulled out of a larger story or video that is only a piece of a bigger event really makes no sense unless you have the rest of the story. Oh, it may serve a purpose of making a point for someone to use as evidence to support their issue or make some one else look bad, but it is not necessarily the true story.
Look at issues important to you in the same way you look at the evidence presented to you by your kids when they have been fighting in the bedroom. If you do that you may see that there are many sides to the story.
And good luck with figuring out the whole truth. At least you tried.